First ‘Heroes’ Tournament Draws Hundreds at Pathfinder Camporee in Portugal

Exclusive game customization for the event opens doors for creative adaptations at future events around the world.

Heroes Staff, with ANN Staff
First ‘Heroes’ Tournament Draws Hundreds at Pathfinder Camporee in Portugal
Customized exclusively for the National JA 2024 Camporee in Portugal, the Heroes app featured content about King David in the Bible. [Image: Heroes]

From March 28-31, the National JA 2024 Camporee took place in Praia de Mira, Portugal. This event, the third and largest national camporee in the history of Seventh-day Adventist youth in Portugal, drew more than 3,300 participants of all ages.

The Youth Ministries department and the Communication department of the Portugal Union of Churches Conference partnered with the owners of the Heroes Bible trivia game to organize the first official Heroes tournament during a Pathfinder camporee.

The event’s central figure was the biblical hero David. The game received exclusive customization that was made available only to camporee participants. This initiative opens doors for creative adaptations at future events around the world, Heroes developers said.

Exclusive Customization for the Camporee

Adventist leaders developed Heroes as a way of testing biblical knowledge in an engaging and educational way. Players generally answer the question: “How much do you know about the stories of the Bible?” For the camporee the question became: “How many questions about King David can you answer in two minutes?”

Themed “David, an Unlikely Leader,” the Heroes tournament focused exclusively on King David. More than 200 people of various ages accepted the challenge launched on Saturday (Sabbath) morning. Participants faced progressively more challenging rounds, with increasingly difficult questions, resulting in an exciting final round with three competitors.

The “malta,” as a group of people is called in Portugal, demonstrated that they were sharp in the history of this biblical hero, and despite the pressure of playing live with many people watching, three finalists stood out.

In third place, Raquel answered 66 questions correctly in just two minutes and 30 seconds. In second place, Rute correctly answered 68 questions. The level of play was very high, but nothing prevented the grand champion, Mircia, from answering 73 questions correctly.

Champion of the Heroes Tournament

Mircia Mendes Bento, 19, is from the Reboleira Seventh-day Adventist Church in Amadora, Lisbon. Despite her favorite hero being Moses, she proved to know a lot about David and became the first champion of the Heroes tournament on Portuguese territory.

“Knowing the Bible story helps me to be a better person every day, helps me to be closer to Jesus and to have a different mindset from the rest of society,” Bento said.

She expressed her appreciation for the game, stating, “The Heroes app is very good because it helps us to know more Bible stories, helps us to have more connection with God, and pushes us to read the Bible more. I think it could include more characters in the app.”

About the tournament and her participation, Bento said, “I loved the tournament organized at the camporee. I felt very excited about the tournament. I am a very competitive person, and I loved feeling like I was in the Olympics! By winning this tournament, I felt very proud of myself and amazed, because I had no idea I would answer so quickly under pressure.”

Bento had a message for young people: “Install this app, play, and you will learn a lot about the Bible. But remember, the most important thing is to read the Bible. Don’t get discouraged, stay firm in God’s ways, and He will guide you.”

Rute, who came in second place, shared a similar thought. “This type of tournament can be very fun and entertaining, but please don’t take your eyes off the most important thing, which is to study the Bible calmly, not in a hurry, just to meet a goal like the Bible Year or preparation for a contest, but for the pleasure of really learning and being able to hear God’s voice through His word. A relationship is made through speaking [prayer], but also through listening.”

Tiago Alves, the Youth Department director for the Portuguese Union, shared the following testimony: “It was incredible and very motivating to see the enthusiasm of dozens of young people who, in an event with over 3,300 participants, dedicated themselves and committed to the challenge of Heroes. … But most importantly, this response reveals the commitment of valuable young people to systematic Bible study. Praise be to God! Thanks to the entire Heroes team.”

The original version of this story was posted by Adventist News Network. Find supporting materials with the Heroes theme here.

Heroes Staff, with ANN Staff